Woman who cited religious objections law pleads guilty

Khin Par Thaing (Photo supplied/Marion County Jail)

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — An Indianapolis woman charged with child abuse has pleaded guilty after earlier arguing Indiana’s religious objection law gave her the right to beat her son with a coat hanger.

The Indianapolis Star reports that 30-year-old Khin Par Thaing on Friday received a year of probation in a plea agreement. Thaing’s attorney in July cited Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act, saying it gives her the right to discipline her children according to her evangelical Christian beliefs.

Thaing is accused of beating her son with a coat hanger, leaving him with 36 bruises and red welts. Prosecutors said Indiana’s compelling interest in preventing child abuse outweighs religious protections in state law.

Thaing is a refugee from Myanmar who was granted political asylum. She also cited cultural differences in her defense.

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